Ultra low power (ULP) RF specialist Nordic Semiconductor ASA (NOD.OL) today announces the release of its nRF51922 System-on-Chip (SoC), the world's first multi-protocol SoC solution offering concurrent ANT+ and Bluetooth low energy wireless communication natively in a single chip.
By bringing together the two most popular wireless technologies in the ULP wireless industry today, the nRF51922 System-on-Chip will allow the development of multiprotocol products that natively support both ANT+ and Bluetooth low energy wireless technology. This will mean product developers and end users in markets like sport, wellness, healthcare, and smartphone appcessories, will no longer be forced to choose between these two previously incompatible wireless technologies and associated ecosystems.
The nRF51922 is drop-in compatible with existing nRF51 series devices, but features Nordic's brand new 'S310' SoftDevice that combines the ANT+ and Bluetooth low energy stacks in a single software framework. The S310 offers the same fully autonomous, secure, and event-driven application interface as existing Nordic SoftDevices, which includes a clean separation of protocol stacks and application firmware to greatly simplify firmware development and testing, and maximize operational reliability.
Pin-compatible hardware and a familiar interface on the S310 for existing Nordic S110 (Bluetooth low energy) and S210 (ANT+) SoftDevice users means Nordic customers that already have an nRF51 Series ANT+ or Bluetooth low energy product will be able to keep existing hardware design and firmware unchanged, and only add needed firmware support for the new protocol stack when adopting the nRF51922.
"Millions of consumers rely on ANT+ enabled devices and this multi-protocol SoC will expand their opportunities to connect with additional smartphones, such as the iPhone," states Rod Morris, VP at ANT Wireless. "Apps and cloud-based services provide new ways for device manufacturers to engage their customers and enhance the user experience. This solution is an enabling piece to make that happen."
"The nRF51922 is exactly what the ULP wireless industry needs," comments Geir Langeland, Nordic Semiconductor's Director of Sales & Marketing. "It will mean product developers will no longer need to develop separate ANT+ and Bluetooth low energy product offerings, could encourage even more smartphone manufacturers to offer native ANT+ and Bluetooth low energy support, and ultimately give end users even greater choice when selecting wireless accessories and appcessories with fewer compatibility headaches."